If you want to know who I currently recommend for WordPress hosting, here is the quick answer – SiteGround >
If you want to know why, please continue to read.
WordPress has come a long way over the years and fortunately so has WordPress hosting. Websites are not my main business but I operate solely online and as such, I have to keep on top of the maintenance and running of numerous websites that I own and operate. This has resulted in gaining knowledge and skills in this area and I am lucky enough to get regular referrals for website builds. I tend to do a few a year, however, at the start of this year, I am in the unusual situation of having 3 builds in development simultaneously.
This is great, but it has brought me to the point of re-evaluating some of the advice I have been giving as hosting seems to have changed.
Over the years, I have had some horrendous issues with cheap hosting and for my own websites, I tend to mainly pay for premium / higher-end hosting because of it. I also recommend premium hosting for people who are expecting a lot from their website, however, most of my clients do not want to pay £25+ per month for hosting; they would rather pay for low cost shared hosting. This is definitely the right way to go if you are just starting out, but who should you trust with your hosting and how much should you pay?
The following is my honest experience so far
These days, I tend to look at reviews before I buy, and I know many people do. However, when I started with hosting real user reviews were not really big. Today, you can leave reviews in numerous places and they are often a good indication.
A brief note about my past and current experience
About 8 years ago I had a server with eUKhost. I knew several people who had used their shared hosting and were having a good experience. However, long story short, my experience was a nightmare. The websites were down or running slow more than I care to remember. My clients were not happy with me, even though it was out of my control.
So, how are eUKhost today? According to Trustpilot and 1,514 reviews, they are excellent. Perhaps they have improved, or I was very unlucky for a prolonged period of time.
WP Engine Premium Hosting
Eventually, we decided to pay more and went with WP Engine. This was expensive, but at the time had great reviews. To be fair, it has been very good. Rock solid and although expensive has been relatively trouble-free. In addition, a big plus was that it was managed hosting and core WordPress updates were carried out automatically. This was a massive benefit at the time. However, in 2019 even some low-cost WordPress hosting offers this. In our experience, the support from WP Engine has been good overall, although more recently it’s been a case of being sent to help files in comparison to years gone by when they would sort any problem out for you living up to the managed tagline. Having said that, we have had a good experience with them so far and will probably stay as long as this is the case. The reviews in 2019 for them are average from 30 people on Trustpilot.
We are currently looking for an alternative to this company, but at this point we are still a customer. We have not had the best experience. Their support is tiered and we are on the lower tier, and from our experience whenever anything goes wrong they won’t help even when it is their fault. To be fair, the issues have been rare but a total pain in the a*** when they do occur. The incident that finished it for us was when the hosting fell over and would not even reboot. The cloud server had become corrupted under normal running consideration and they would not rebuild the server due to our support level. We could not login, we could do nothing and from no fault of ours, our website was dead. Luckily, I got on to the US support office and a friendly technician took pity on our plight and rebuilt our cloud server. There have been several smaller issues, but generally a very expensive but terrible service in our experience. It seems that Trustpilot reviews tend to agree. I don’t think there is anything this company can do for us that would make us stay with them now.
If WordPress.org recommend them it should be good… Right?
You would think the organisation that builds the software would be the best people to ask for recommendations. That is what I did. On WordPress.org they recommend 3 hosts. I took the top one from the list and suggested it to my clients. It was only around $4 per month. Let’s look at them in order.
So, because this was at the top of the WordPress list, it was the one we have been suggesting to my clients. To be fair, I or they have had no issues with it so far, but I was shocked when I discovered the reviews. I can’t understand how WordPress can justify having this at the top of their list and I don’t feel confident in recommending them anymore. For that reason, I thought I would check the reviews on the other two they recommend.
I used Dreamhost many years ago and have also suggested it to a few people in the past. I had no problem with their hosting and to the best of my knowledge neither did the people I suggested it to. However, it seems that Trustpilot users give it an average review overall.
This is the last on the hosting list on WordPress.org. However, the reviews are staggeringly better than the other two. With 1,791 reviews they are rated as excellent. Looking at the starter package it seems to have everything that you would you need for a WordPress website and the price is low too. This is the one I will suggest to clients from now on and I am considering moving this website to it in order to test it.
The Trustpilot reviews are not the only reviews of these companies, so do your own research. I just felt it was a good overall indication and even though my experience is not necessarily in line with these reviews, I felt it was worth sharing. It also demonstrates the research I have done in order to decide who to suggest to future clients.
In the interests of disclosure, these are my honest views and experience and I am not being paid to say anything written here. There are affiliate links in this post. If you have found this article useful and wish to thank me please register through one of my links. It costs you nothing extra.
While any website can give you convincing marketing words and can look slick and professional I am only interested in having a good experience of using their service and avoiding hosting hell. In my opinion, other users reviews are a good place to start.
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